Planning a family camping trip? You’re not alone. Camping is a great way to spend some much-needed quality time together, with the added bonus of being amongst some of the country’s most jaw-dropping natural spaces, too. But if this is your first time venturing out into the wilderness with the family in tow, there are a few additional things you’ll need to consider when organising your trip.
If you’re travelling with kids, you have probably already thought about packing wipes - and lots of them! And you definitely won’t have forgotten about toys, or kid-friendly camping gear like portable high chairs and child-size life jackets if you will be heading out on the water. But there’s more to planning a successful family camping trip than meets the eye. Below, we take a look at some of the less obvious things to think about that can really help to turn your family camping trip into a fantastic holiday that you will never forget.
At-Home Security – Protect your high-value items while away
A family camping trip doesn’t just have to mean bringing the kids along. In fact, more young adults are joining their parents on holiday than ever before, which means you might be planning to bring the grandparents or other family members along for the ride, too. If you’re all going away together and there’s no one nearby to keep an eye on your property, make sure you’re taking the right measures to keep your valuables secure. A storage rental service can be ideal for protecting high-value items such as computers, laptops, jewellery and any other valuables that you don’t want to bring camping with you.
Accessibility – what to look for
If you’re going to be bringing a pram or stroller for the kids, or if you’re travelling with family members who use wheelchairs, it’s definitely worth checking out some accessible camping sites across Australia that can make things much easier for everyone. Some important things to look out for are wide berth parking spaces right near your accommodation, accessible cabins with stroller-friendly layouts, and local activities that can be enjoyed by everyone regardless of mobility. Accessible sites are probably a lot easier to find than you think. There are some great options like Evans Head and Seal Rocks.
Rainy Day Entertainment
Fingers crossed that the weather is on your side! But the occasional downpour can happen. And it’s important to be prepared. While you may be content to spend a rainy day cosied up inside with a bottle of wine (or two!), kids typically aren’t known for enjoying the peace and quiet! Choose a campsite that’s close to some great indoor activities and look for accommodation that’s geared up for family getaways. Even though you might be dreaming of a screen-free holiday, having a TV with Foxtel channels can be a lifesaver for those rare occasions when the weather doesn’t seem to want to cooperate with your plans!
Food – camp kitchen recipes for the kids
If you’ve been camping before - either with a partner or as a solo traveller - you’ve probably found that you’re able to fill up with a big breakfast that will keep you going all day until your evening campfire dinner. But if you’re planning a trip with the kids, keep in mind that they get hungry often. It’s worth planning to create a mobile ‘camp kitchen’, ensuring that the little ones have the essential fuel they need when they need it. Consider packing plenty of on-the-go finger foods that you can take with you on days out, like pre-made pikelets, veggie sticks, little packs of popcorn, and freshly sliced fruit.
The Journey – have some games on hand
When there are little ones involved, camping doesn’t start when you reach your destination: it begins the moment you hop in the car! Even if you’re only travelling a short distance on your first trip just to ‘test the waters’, it’s always a good idea to plan some family road trip activities to stop the kids from becoming bored and get them excited about their getaway. There are lots of games you could try out, like 20 questions or backseat bingo. Playing games together is also a good way to keep the kids off their iPads or phones for a little while, especially if it can be difficult to peel them away from the screen.
First Aid – learn how to use your first aid kit
You’ve probably already got a first aid kit in readiness for your trip. But do you know how to use it? The good news is that a first aid kit is usually just a precaution, and it’s not something that’s regularly needed. But remember that kids are especially skilled at getting themselves into all sorts of situations! When they’re off having fun in the great Australian outdoors, there’s definitely going to be the odd scraped knee from time to time. And learning how to use a first aid kit now can save you a lot of time when you’re faced with a boo-boo. Read up on some first aid trips for camping before leaving home.
Go with the Flow – Don’t Worry, Be Happy
If you’ve only ever taken camping trips as a couple, or as a solo traveller, extending the invitation to the kids, the grandparents and other members of the family can be a nerve-wracking experience! It’s never easy to know exactly what to expect when you’ve never done this before, so try not to pigeonhole what a family camping trip should look like; be flexible. Go with the flow. And most importantly, don’t worry.
If you think about these extra details when organising your first family camping trip, you can help to ensure that your holiday goes as smoothly as possible and that everyone has a fantastic experience.
Renee Wainwright is the gobox Mobile Storage Manager whose years of experience in the industry allow her to provide customised and tailored mobile storage solutions to suit residential, business and corporate customer’s storage and moving needs.